A windy morning at the beach

I had just walked out on to the beach when these two oystercatchers flew by and then circled around and landed in front of me.

A juvenile ring billed gull flew by.

Something spooked the sandpipers and they all took off.

I found the pair of whimbrels that have been sighted hanging out nearby the gulf pier. They were not skittish at all as shell collectors walked right past them. Of course the willet was trying to get in on the pictures as well.

Students from nearby Eckard Collage have been volunteering to help with hooked birds on the fishing pier. They were just arriving with their gear on this cloudy windy day. There’s a huge problem with birds getting caught in fishing line. Not just at this pier but other busy piers as well. Pelicans, cormorants and gulls are just some of the birds that get hooked while diving close to the people fishing. If people cut the lines, the birds fly off with tangled fishing line and get trapped in mangroves and starve to death. The girls are here to help show the fishermen how to reel in the birds and take the line off or the hooks out.

Meanwhile up at the east beach turnaround, the kiteboarders were out in full force on this windy morning.

SkyWatch Friday

Just being outside

A beautiful morning out at Fort Desoto. Out on Outback Key, you can see St. Pete beach far off in the distance. That big pink hotel (Don CeSar) really stands out.

Rush hour traffic on the water.

Usual birds around the fishing pier. A ruddy turnstone, loggerhead shrike and a ring billed gull with just a touch of orange around his eye.

TOTO, the banded oystercatcher, was there in his usual spot.

His mate was close by looking for food.

A nice cool morning for a walk on the beach at Fort Desoto in February. Sadly now this is more important than every, just being outside. Yesterday Brett and I went to the beach just to be outside since everything else is closed. Even the zoo is closed (although the keepers will still be there taking care of the animals). I’m working at home for the next few weeks and I’m sure the walls will start closing in. I’m going to try and walk in the neighborhood after work each night to get out. Hope everyone stays sane out there. Thanks for stopping by and let me know how you are coping.

image-in-ing: weekly photo linkup

Our World Tuesday Graphichttp://ourworldtuesdaymeme.blogspot.com/

 

Breakfast with the oystercatchers

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I sat down on the sand at the north beach sanctuary and watched this oystercatcher feeding just outside of the roped off area. They got pretty close to me and seemed very comfortable just walking along digging for slimy gunk. I watched for a while before heading out to the rest of the park. I’ve seen this green banding one there before. He’s a regular in the winter at Fort Desoto park.

Birds at the fishing pier

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Snowy egrets waiting for a handout from a fisherman.

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Cormorants keeping an eye on things from up high.

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The juvenile reddish egret is still hanging around the pier.

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The usual oystercatcher couple trying to stand out in the crowd.

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A sandwich tern taking a bath.

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A young sandwich tern still screaming for Mom to bring a snack.

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A laughing gull with a shell.

Lots of different birds hanging around the fishing pier at Fort Desoto.

Saturday's Critters